On Forgetting How To Actually Make Coffee

You read that correctly.
I, self-proclaimed coffee addict, forgot how to make coffee.

In my defense, I spent the past year simply stirring instant coffee powder into a cup of hot water. I came home and freaked out about having a Keurig in my possession again…and it continues to be a joyous reunion.

Until I wanted more than just my single serve Keurig and needed to actually brew a full pot of coffee.


I stared at the filter. I stared at the coffee pot. I stared at the coffee grounds.
I could not for the life of me figure out what to do with all the pieces…so I called my mom, naturally.

A piece of me crumpled as I finally brought that cup of coffee to my lips. Because this was about much more than me forgetting how to make coffee.

I’m in a place I don’t want to be.
I’m home under my parents’ roof after 5 years of living a completely different life quite independent from them.
I’m home in a place where my community & friendships have dwindled and weakened, and in a lot of cases – don’t even exist anymore.
I’m home in a place that feels more strange than all of those times I woke up to a half-naked stranger a few feet over from my bed in a hostel.

I have passions I want to pursue, dreams I want to see become realities, plans I’m making and ready to step into. Nearly everyday since I’ve been home, I’ve been trying to plan my great escape from home (again).

As I admitted defeat in the battle of the coffee maker, I heard it. That all too familiar voice that calls me to stop. That still, small voice that wraps it’s arms around me and says “Not yet.”

Lovely. A season of “not yet” is about as good as being stuck in the dead of winter for me. I much prefer seasons of warmth & color, seasons where things are happening. Seasons where you can sit outside and feel the sun being absorbed into your skin – where there’s football & frisbee…seasons that are active with life.

A season of not yet looked nothing like that to me. Lots of dead things covered in ice. Sitting on the couch under a blanket. It’s the last things I wanted to do, especially when I looked at it in comparison to the season I just left.

And then I got a letter in the mail.
A letter from that season I just left.
A letter that I had written to myself in Albania, knowing that this season of “not yet” was coming. And you want to know what the past “world traveling, team leading, month eleven racer” version of me said to the present day, sitting in North Carolina version of me?

I know you hate it, but it’s no excuse to cast it off. Invest somewhere. Take a risk. The Lord doesn’t waste a season, no matter how cold it may seem to you. Fight the apathy and the temptation to compare, or else you will waste a potentially wonderful season. You don’t have to live defeated just because you’re not where you thought you’d be yet.

All the truth. All the conviction. All the tears.

I sat outside the day after getting the letter, feeling the chill of the coming season brush across my face as the sun absorbed into my skin, and I simply said “okay.”

Okay to transition. Okay to not yet. Okay to calling this place home for a little while longer.

Embracing “not yet” is scary and it looks differently everywhere I turn. It looks like meeting up for coffee. It looks like reaching out to people you haven’t seen in years. It looks like walking into a brand new church. It looks like getting a job. And it looks like not letting the glory of the past rob the present of its potential.

I’ve dragged my feet long enough doing that to have learned that looking back in comparison is no excuse for not moving forward into new community, new opportunities, and discovering new truths.



2 thoughts on “On Forgetting How To Actually Make Coffee

  1. Chels, this blog is perfect and those words you wrote yourself in that letter are really convicting. Thanks for putting to words how weird this season is. All the love.

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